• Grow

Protect Your Family from Nature’s Extremes

Having just gone through our first hurricane for the season, I have realized how ill-prepared my family and I are for these extreme weather situations.

For National Preparedness Month in September, Grow wishes to remind our readers that their homes and families need to be ready for potential natural disasters such as tornadoes, hurricanes, snowstorms, wildfires and floods. Here are home safety tips:


Alarm your home.

Equipping your home with the right number of alarms is the best way to ensure that your family is alerted when the dangers of smoke or fire arise within your home. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends that smoke alarms be installed inside every bedroom, outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home, including the basement. It is important to maintain alarms by testing them monthly and replacing the batteries every six months, unless 10-year battery alarms are installed.


Check carbon monoxide (CO) alarms.

When natural disasters strike, CO poisoning incidents increase. CO alarms should be installed on every level of the home and in central locations outside each bedroom. Just like smoke alarms, it is important to maintain CO alarms by testing them regularly and replacing the batteries twice each year. To eliminate battery replacements, install First Alert 10-Year Carbon Monoxide Alarms, which feature a 10-year battery that lasts the life of the alarm.


Never use generators indoors.

In the case of a power outage, portable electric generators must be used outside only. Never use them inside the home, in a garage or in any confined area that can allow CO to collect. And, be careful to follow operating instructions closely. You can also consider a battery operated backup.


Practice safety together.

In the event that your family needs to evacuate your home, every second counts. When developing an emergency escape plan, identify two exits out of each room, including windows and doors, and set a dedicated meeting spot outside. Be sure to practice with the entire family at least twice a year.


Build an emergency kit. Plan ahead in case you need to take shelter in your home with an emergency supply kit, which should include things like water, flashlights, a transistor radio and a fire extinguisher. Consider using a fire extinguishing spray that has a simple, compact design that makes it easy to use and store.


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